Brian J. Wiltgen

Learn More
Lesions of the rodent hippocampus invariably abolish context fear memories formed in the recent past but do not always prevent new learning. To better understand this discrepancy, we thoroughly examined the acquisition of context fear in rats with pretraining excitotoxic lesions of the dorsal hippocampus. In the first experiment, animals received a shock(More)
BACKGROUND It is widely believed that the hippocampus plays a temporary role in the retrieval of episodic and contextual memories. Initial research indicated that damage to this structure produced amnesia for newly acquired memories but did not affect those formed in the distant past. A number of recent studies, however, have found that the hippocampus is(More)
Mutations that cause intellectual disability (ID) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are commonly found in genes that encode for synaptic proteins. However, it remains unclear how mutations that disrupt synapse function impact intellectual ability. In the SYNGAP1 mouse model of ID/ASD, we found that dendritic spine synapses develop prematurely during the(More)
The NR2B subunit of the NMDA receptor interacts with several prominent proteins in the postsynaptic density, including calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII). To determine the function of these interactions, we derived transgenic mice expressing a ligand-activated carboxy-terminal NR2B fragment (cNR2B) by fusing this fragment to a tamoxifen(More)
Ca(2+)-regulated gene transcription is essential to diverse physiological processes, including the adaptive plasticity associated with learning. We found that basal synaptic input activates the NF-kappa B transcription factor by a pathway requiring the Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent kinase CaMKII and local submembranous Ca(2+) elevation. The p65:p50 NF-kappa B(More)
Ca2+-regulated gene transcription is essential to diverse physiological processes, including the adaptive plasticity associated with learning. We found that basal synaptic input activates the NF-κB transcription factor by a pathway requiring the Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent kinase CaMKII and local submembranous Ca2+ elevation. The p65:p50 NF-κB form is(More)
The basolateral amygdala (BLA) is intimately involved in the development of conditional fear. Converging lines of evidence support a role for this region in the storage of fear memory but do not rule out a time-limited role in the memory consolidation. To examine this issue, we assessed the stability of BLA contribution to fear memories acquired across the(More)
Studies of learning and memory have provided a great deal of evidence implicating hippocampal mechanisms in the initial storage of facts and events. However, until recently, there were few hints as to how and where this information was permanently stored. A recent series of rodent molecular and cellular cognition studies provide compelling evidence for the(More)
Pavlovian fear conditioning is a phenomenon amenable to laboratory analysis of the neurobiology of fear and the investigation of neural mechanisms of learning and memory. Investigators have made much progress in delineating the neurocircuitry and neurochemistry of fear conditioning. The place of the hippocampus in context fear remains a controversial issue.(More)